Vermont retained its ranking as the healthiest U.S. state, topping the United Health Foundation's 2011 American's Health Rankings list 3 years in row, thanks in part to a high rate of education and low incidence of infectious disease. Vermont has been among the top five healthiest states for the past eight years, climbing steadily from 20th in 1990 to 12th in 2000, to become first in 2007, 2009 and 2010.
The rankings, published online, have tracked the nation's health for the last two decades by evaluating 23 factors including smoking, binge drinking, diabetes, high school graduation, immunization, prenatal care and obesity.
The annual report is published jointly by the foundation, American Public Health Association and Partnership for Prevention. It pulls data from sources including the Census Bureau, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the U.S. Department of Education.